All things considered: 13 rMBP or 15 cMBP?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by skolvikes, Jun 17, 2013.

  1. skolvikes macrumors newbie

    Mar 20, 2011
    In general, which do you find the better value?

    13" rMBP 2013
    2.6 i5
    256 ssd


    15" cMBP 2012
    2.3 i7
    500 hdd

    Just in general.
  2. Asuriyan macrumors 6502a

    Feb 4, 2013
    I wouldn't get the base model 15" because the 512MB graphics memory (for my uses) kind of defeats the purpose of having a dedicated GPU. That said, to me the 13" rMBP seems to better fit the role of a glorified MBA than a primary computer. It all depends on what kind of demands you place on your system.
  3. duervo macrumors 68020


    Feb 5, 2011
    Since those are the two choices, retina display probably doesn't mean much to you. Given that, you'd be getting a quad core i7 CPU in the 15" cMBP vs a dual core i5 in the 13" rMBP. Performance-wise, it makes it an easy choice, as any deficiency in performance of the 15" due to the HDD can be negated by replacing it with an after-market SSD.

    Also, 512MB of VRAM on a dedicated GPU is still loads better than the integrated GPU selection of the 13" rMBP.

    So, yeah, I believe the 15" cMBP to be the better value, from a performance perspective.

    In fact, with the latest 13" AIR that Apple just released, a 13" rMBP purchase would be very hard to justify performance-wise right now. If I was in the market for a 13" Macbook right now, I would hold on to see what Apple does next with the 13" MBP, because right now the performance gap between them is much shorter than it was a couple weeks ago.
  4. sofianito macrumors 65816


    Jan 14, 2011
    The 15" cMBP is more powerful, has a dGPU with 512MB VRAM to handle graphic intensive apps/games, and is upgradable (you can put more ram and ssd at your own pace later on).

    The 13" rMBP has a gorgeous and crisp screen thanks to retina and is much more portable. No dGPU, hence not meant for graphic intensive apps/games. You cannot upgrade the ram. If I am not wrong, the disk could be upgraded according to OWC.

    In my opinion, it depends mainly on what will you use the notebook for, the price, and how long you want/expect it to last.
  5. skolvikes thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 20, 2011
    Both good objective opinions. While the GPU and CPU are much slower in the 13", I think many would be surprised how well it handles stuff. I kind of hate the idea of tinkering with an aftermarket SSD to be honest, although RAM isn't a big deal.

    I do very very occasional FCPX, Motion, Compressor, and Photoshop. I do not game one bit, so that doesn't bug me. I've ran those programs on much older and slower machines before to a somewhat decent level.

    I have the 13" as I'm typing and I love it. But I wouldn't mind a bigger screen as my only computer. Just wondering if I'm going to be kicking myself for not getting the quad-core.

    I upgrade every couple years.

    EDIT: I should just find the extra money and get the refurbished 15" rMBP. (I got this one with an employee discount, but I'm at my return date with it, and the extra $150 or so for the 15" retina would put me tight financially right now. No money lectures please :) )
  6. sofianito macrumors 65816


    Jan 14, 2011
    The 13" rMBP is then perfect for you. Congrats! :)

    I am probably getting the same model as yours but with 500gb disk. Unless the haswell is released, it will likely be a refurb.
  7. iAppl3Fan macrumors 6502a


    Sep 8, 2011
    You cant go wrong with either one. They are both wonderful machines. For everyday usage, you're better with the rmbp 13" because of the weight and ssd. If you're investing for long term then go for the mbp 15.

    Good luck!
  8. skolvikes thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 20, 2011

    It really is a nice machine. I just have that paralysis by analysis going on, thinking "It's only X amount more for 15" which has all this extra stuff." It's nice, but it's not a NEED right now I guess. If my Video Editing picks up again in the next year or so I guess I can always sell this one and upgrade later.


    Good call. Yeah most likely I will sell and upgrade this one to a 15 or another whatever else in the next year or two.

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